Fanfare opening for festival

Jan Garbarek with members of the Hilliard Ensemble

Jan Garbarek with members of the Hilliard Ensemble

Melinda Messenger will star in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at The Kings Theatre

Melinda Messenger to star in Kings Theatre pantomime

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A specially-commissioned fanfare will introduce Winchester Festival’s 10-day celebration of music, literature and theatre.

Jock McKenzie’s new work will precede a performance of Mahler’s massive Resurrection symphony by Hampshire County Youth Crchestra, conducted by Tom Seligman, in Winchester Cathedral on July 1.

The concert, marking the orchestra’s 40th anniversary and the centenary of the composer’s death, will also feature international operatic soprano Claire Rutter, who lives in Hampshire, and mezzo Sarah Fryer .

Other musical star performers include Winchester’s international trumpeter Alison Balsom, saxophonist Jan Gabarek with the Hilliard Ensemble, choral composer John Rutter with a ‘Come and Sing’ day, and the Endellion String Quartet who will be joined by poet Wendy Cope.

On the festival stage, Robert Powell and Elizabeth Garvie perform A Celebration of Jane Austen, and the Festival Players tell the story of Winchester’s 19th century battle for sanitation.

Barry Cryer promises an evening of ‘sit-down’ comedy, and Melvyn Bragg, Peter Snow and Will Hutton are among other speakers.

· Public booking opens on April 26. Details and tickets: (01962) 857276 or winchesterfestival.co.uk.

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